After a long hiatus, I am reopening my art shop on Etsy October 15! I’ll be exclusively selling monotype prints, including the one above, in a variety of sizes. This art store launch will include ten original pieces, and I’ll do a flash/mini update for Small Business Saturday in November, just in time for the holidays. More regular updates to come in 2021!
I’ve wanted to create on bigger canvases for a while now, and made my first 16 x 20 print using a large gel plate. I wasn’t sure how it would go, as I had only printed on paper, and never paper as large as this canvas.
As with my other work, I wanted to keep it loose and a little abstract. I enjoy it when the piece tells me where it’s going. But where was this going? For a while, it was hard to tell. Maybe nowhere good!
I added layers and pattern until I was happy with it. But as I became happier with the flowers, I realized there was still a lot of space to fill. My flowers looked like they were floating in space! Not the look I was going for. And yet, I knew if I wasn’t careful, I would overwork the piece.
I walked away for a few hours, then came back and started to rotate the canvas, something pretty easy to do with these more abstract pieces. I also added some marks, which I admit are not my best work. 😀 But, that’s okay, that’s why we experiment!
I turned it on its side, and found the perfect spot for a vase or pot to go. So, that balances out the painting a bit more, and now I can begin adding the finishing touches and fix the marks that I don’t like as much. This is still a work in progress, for sure.
The lesson here is to look at your art from all angles! I stared at this painting for a while before I realized I could turn the actual canvas. It was that easy to change perspective and find a solution. Especially in more abstract works, don’t forget to use ALL of the tools in your box, even the ones that in hindsight, seem pretty obvious.
Working on a larger piece is fun, and poses new challenges to overcome. My biggest challenges were filling the space, and balancing enough definition to make it look “finished” at that size, while keeping it in my loose style without going too abstract. In general, I like the piece and think it’s a great start. This is more for practice and won’t be for sale, but I plan to have at least three large canvases available when I open my art shop next month.
I welcomed two kittens into my home (more on that later!) and adjusting with them has meant a little more time away from my studio, where there are many oil sticks to eat, soft pastels for kitty paws to crumble and gold leaf to stick to whiskers. (Yes, kitten-proofing the studio is at the top of my to-do list!)
So, I have been working digitally for the past few weeks, and some of my new favorite art to make is embellishing old photos from various library and public domain archives. These performers are from the New York Public Library digital collection.
All updated images embellished by Stephanie Khattak using iPad Pro and Procreate.
I ordered a few colored plexiglass squares to experiment with. Since they’re so small, instead of printing with them, I just embellished them with acrylic and gold leaf. I ordered this blue color, a hot pink transparent and an opaque red. I really like the effect!
The guide is a heavy pencil drawing that I used for painting and printing the larger pieces. I am hoping to get multiple uses out of these, especially being able to focus in on details for smaller pieces.